The Airports Authority of India (AAI) will soon take up the expansion of Surat airport with the construction of new domestic terminal building, apron and parallel taxi track in the coming months.
The AAI has earmarked 353 crore INR for the holistic development of the airport. Additionally, the tender for the internal modification of existing terminal building has been awarded to a city-based construction company for creating more space for the passengers.
Official sources said that the civil work of the new domestic terminal building includes the new building, car park and electrification at the cost of 181 crore INR. The airport system and IT works will be carried out with an expenditure of 33 crore INR. Apart from this, the pavement work for parallel taxi track and apron required is 88 crore INR.
Sources said that the existing terminal building having an area of 8,474 square metres (ground floor and first floor) is capable of handling 500 domestic passengers during peak hours. Due to the increase in the number of flights, the existing building remains congested during peak hours.
The internal modification of the this building will create additional area of 1,350 sq m, taking the total area close to 10,000 sq m.
A senior airport official said, “The daily passenger traffic has crossed to over 2,600 in a day and the existing terminal is unable to handle the rush. On top of it, international flight operation may also start soon. Since the new domestic terminal building may take another two to three years, the modification in existing building will accommodate more passengers”
Recently, the AAI has awarded the work for the construction of new apron at the old site. This apron will be used for parking of the smaller aircrafts, thereby keeping the existing apron free for the bigger ones.
RTI activist Rajesh Modi said, “The domestic passenger traffic has crossed over one lakh per month. This shows the potential of air travel in the city. Now, it is time for the AAI and central government to expedite the construction of new terminal, apron and taxi track.”